Two escapees from Bon Air Juvenile Correctional Center captured in Michigan

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The two inmates who escaped from the Bon Air Juvenile Correctional Center in Chesterfield County have been captured in Michigan, police say.

The Grand Rapids Fugitive Task Force apprehended the escapees on Saturday evening at a hotel in Battle Creek, Michigan around 5 p.m.

A correctional officer was assaulted during the escape on July 13 — where Rashad E. Williams and Jabar Ali Taylor fled through a hole that was cut in a perimeter fence. A getaway vehicle staged outside the detention center assisted the escape.

20-year-old Taylor was serving a sentence after being convicted of two counts of second-degree murder and aggravated malicious assault. 18-year-old Williams was convicted of malicious wounding and robbery.

Taylor and Williams were traveling together after initially fleeing to Pennsylvania. Since then, U.S. Marshals pursued leads in several states. Over the course of the two-week-long investigation, the fugitives were caught 700 miles away from the scene of the initial escape.

Michigan State Police, Battle Creek and Grand Rapids Police Departments, and the Michigan Department of Corrections collectively assisted in the arrest of the two fugitives.

Since the escape, three more people were arrested for aiding in the escapee’s disappearance:

  • Destiny L. Harris, 23, of Chesterfield County, was charged with two counts of aiding with the escape of a juvenile. Harris, a Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice employee who worked at the Bon Air facility, is being held at the Chesterfield County Jail.
  • Darren Briggs, 42, of Lawrenceville, was charged with one felony count of providing a cell phone to a prisoner. Briggs, who was also a Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice employee who worked at the Bon Air facility, is being held at the Chesterfield County Jail. 
  • Gerald Thornton, 33, of Philadelphia, Pa., was arrested on two counts of aiding with the escape of a juvenile. Thornton, a relative of Williams, was taken into custody without incident. 

“This complex investigation and arrest is yet another example of the tenacity and the ‘never give up‘ attitude displayed by Deputy U.S. Marshals and our state and local law enforcement partners all over this great country. Hours of dedicated investigative work by our law enforcement team ensured the safety of the public by getting these very dangerous escapees back into custody quickly and safely. I hope the efforts of these law enforcement professionals will in some way allow our citizens in the Commonwealth of Virginia, and elsewhere, to rest more comfortably tonight,” said Nick E. Proffitt, U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District of Virginia.

The Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s Richmond Field Office also expressed praise for the task force’s work in apprehending the escapees.

“This evening’s apprehension of the escapees from the Bon Air Juvenile Correctional Center is a result of the extensive investigative efforts and fortitude demonstrated by state and federal law enforcement,” said Captain Richard Boyd, commander of the Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s Richmond Field Office. “The U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force members, which include Virginia State Police personnel, are to be commended for their exceptional and exhaustive work on this case.”

Williams and Taylor will be held at the Calhoun County Jail in Battle Creek, Michigan.


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